PERCY JACKSON AND THE OLYMPIANS: SEASON ONE
Starring: Walker Scobell, Leah Jeffries, Aryan Simhadri, Charlie Bushnell, Virginia Kull, Adam Copeland, and Glynn Turman
Creators: Rick Riordan and Jonathan E. Steinberg
They did it y’all. They fucking did it. Those horrible Percy Jackson movies are in the rear view because Walker Scobell, Leah Jeffries, and Aryan Simhadri are officially the new young-adult trio we’re gonna watch grow up. This show is excellent, and what’s most satisfying is the fact that for an action-packed YA franchise, the best parts are its world-building, pacing, and acting. My only wish is that next season (or four!!) lets the big moments breathe more to cut down on the anticlimactic reveals. Otherwise, this is an honest, entertaining, and beautifully structured adaptation that kept a huge smile on my face.
I’ve never read the Percy Jackson books (nor was I a fan of the Logan Lerman-led films), but my fellow writer Amarú's love for the book series led to me checking this series out. Honestly, what a blast! Due to its similarities, it’s bound to be measured against the Harry Potter franchise, but the world-building and eclectic cast of supporting characters (Adam Copeland is terrific) are on the same playing field. These aspects set the new leads up for success, and I expect them to only get stronger as they grow within these characters. I’ll definitely stick with this pleasant surprise of a series.
Someone should’ve handed out Red Bulls on set because Percy Jackson and the Olympians is critically low on energy. The three leads basically sleepwalk through every scene, offering no charisma or chemistry whatsoever. The cinematography is expressionless, the effects look cheap, and the scripts are perplexingly dry. There were moments where it felt like the writers were going through the book scene by scene and systematically removing any and all tension they could find. The Percy Jackson books are just about as fun as young adult novels come, so there’s absolutely no excuse for an adaptation this boring. For shame, Disney… for shame.